Sunday, 19 January 2014

Stop stop stop Putin



The rumblings of anti-gay sentiment across the African continent and in Eastern Europe continue, but (hearteningly) more and more people are speaking out in opposition to the situation in such benighted countries as Uganda, Nigeria, Cameroon and, of course, with less than three weeks to go until the Sochi Winter Olympics, Putin's Russia.

Principle 6 of the Olympic Charter states that “Any form of discrimination with regard to a country or a person on grounds of race, religion, politics, gender or otherwise is incompatible with belonging to the Olympic Movement,” and the International Olympic Committee has confirmed that this includes sexual orientation. But in Russia, you can now be fined or arrested for speaking publicly about gay, lesbian, bi or trans issues. The new laws have fuelled a massive surge in anti-gay violence within the country.

To up the pressure on the vile dictator and his cronies, those clever people at the leading campaign organisation All Out have come up with a particularly effective-sounding campaign:
Athletes making political statements or gestures at the Games could be punished under the Olympic rules. But we've got a clever way around that. We're only asking them to publicly show their support for one of the Olympics' very own rules – Principle 6, which says no discrimination is allowed.

Snowboarder Belle Brockhoff has signed up, and so has the entire Australian men's bob-sled team! But we'll need more Olympians to publicly support Principle 6 and Russia's lesbian, gay, bi and trans people.

Athletes are in a unique position to make a difference right now – they could talk about Principle 6 at press conferences and interviews, and wear Principle 6 t-shirts when rules allow, to broadcast our message around the world.

President Putin has recently shown he's worried that global outrage about anti-gay laws and human rights abuses could ruin his Olympics. He changed his mind about banning protests at the Olympics site, and he released high profile political prisoners including Pussy Riot.

He wants the Olympics to be about showing Russia off to build political power and attract corporate dollars.

We can put that at risk, if we get the whole world talking about Russia's anti-gay laws instead. The outcry could be enough to get them to reconsider the laws.
To sign up to this excellent campaign, visit the All Out website at: http://www.allout.org/p6-GB

Merchandise and further information is available at: http://www.principle6.org/.

Please support the Principle 6 campaign!

And here is Dutch drag diva Dolly Bellefleur to reinforce the message in her own inimitable fashion:



There lives an evil man in Russia nowadays
He supports a law against lesbians and gays
Most people look at him with terror and with fear
'Cause he pulls the strings like a wicked puppeteer
It’s distressing how he is suppressing homosexuality
In the name of love we are protesting: Set our sisters free.?
Stop stop stop Putin – Drop your law at the Kremlin – Love is no crime it’s not a disease
Stop stop stop Putin – Your plans are so poisoning – For all the Russian LGBTs.


Indeed.

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